The quarterback is the most important position in all of football. It is also, arguably, the most important position in all of sports. The spotlight is always on for a QB. If the team wins it is because the quarterback played well, if the team loses it is because the quarterback played poorly. While this is not always true, that is the general public perception. Most often the fate of the franchise rides with the QB. With this comes a lot of pressure.
Going into every season there is pressure on QBs. However, every year some carry a little more pressure with them than others. This can be due to a multitude of factors. So, who is carrying the most pressure into the 2020 season?
The first QB on the list is Tom Brady. Brady has finally left New England after his last ever pass there was an interception returned for a touchdown against the Tennessee Titans in the playoffs (people don’t forget). Brady is trying to prove that he doesn’t need coach Bill Belichick to win and the expectations have never been higher in Tampa Bay. He is also trying to squash the perception going around that, “he is done.” There is a lot to prove for Brady in 2020 and with that comes the pressure.
Next on the list is Drew Brees. The main reason Brees makes the list is because this is likely to be his last season and possibly his last chance to win another Super Bowl before retirement. The Saints have had some terrible luck in their past few playoff appearances and they are hoping to get over the hump next year once again. There always seems to be a little added pressure to the all time greats to make that final push for one more Super Bowl. Brees is one of the best to ever put on a helmet in the NFL and another title would certainly solidify his already hall-of-fame career.
While, the previous two QBs on the list were a little long in the tooth and trying to prove something at the end of their careers. The next QB on the list is at the beginning of his career and trying to prove he is the franchise QB and that is Josh Allen. The Buffalo Bills have been the media darling thus far this offseason. Cam Newton to the Patriots may take a little off the shine of everyone’s pick to win the AFC East, the Buffalo Bills, but that doesn’t lessen the pressure on Allen. Allen is heading into his third season and it is time to prove he is a franchise QB. His inefficiencies are well known and everyone in Billsmafia is hoping he can develop enough to be their first franchise QB since Jim Kelly took them to four straight Super Bowls.
Another young QB with a ton of pressure in 2020 is Mitch Trubisky. Trubisky is literally fighting for his job this year. Chicago brought in Nick Foles to compete at the QB position and there is no question Foles could win that starting job. If that occurs Trubisky will fade away as another missed draft pick and the Bears will be remembered as one of the teams that passed on Patrick Mahomes. Trubisky needs to drastically improve in a lot of areas. He has flashed some of his abilities, but has not been able to be consistent enough to be considered a starting franchise QB in the NFL thus far.
Last QB on the list is Baker Mayfield. While most of the nations eyes were on the Cleveland Browns last year, the hype has seemed to fade and everyone is back to, “Browns are who we thought they were.” Mayfield is now on his third head coach in three years since entering the NFL. This inconsistency does not help a young quarterback in their development, but there is still no question Mayfield needs to be better. There is a ton of talent in Cleveland and new head coach Kevin Stefanski has shown to maximize QB talent, like he did with Kirk Cousins in Minnesota. If Mayfield doesn’t show the talent that got him drafted first overall, the whispers of replacing him will certainly start.
No matter the QB in the NFL, pressure is something they will all face going into every season. Fighting for your job, proving you’re the franchise, solidifying a hall-of-fame career and proving you can do it without a hall-of-fame coach adds pressure to the situation. There is arguably no greater position of importance in any sport than quarterback and that adds to the pressure as well. If the QBs on this list are able to manage and deal with the pressure they’re facing in 2020 all of their teams could just find themselves in the mix for a deep run in the playoffs.